Baltimore, MD — As the Free Thought Project reports on a regular basis, police sexual misconduct is not rare. Hundreds of officers are accused and prosecuted every year with many of them receiving slaps on the wrist. To highlight this point, we can look at the case of disgraced Baltimore police officer, Anthony Westerman — who was convicted of multiple counts of rape — and will not be going to jail.
Westerman, 27, was convicted in August of two counts of second-degree rape, third- and fourth-degree sexual offense and second-degree assault of a 22-year-old woman in October 2017. In addition, Westerman was convicted of second-degree assault of another woman in June 2019.
Westerman attacked one woman and raped another and because the judge in his trial claimed that there was no “psychological injury” in one of the cases, he threw the 15 year recommended sentence out and instead opted for a slap on the wrist.
Baltimore County Circuit Judge Keith Truffer suspended all but four years of a 15-year prison term and ordered the officer to serve those 4 measly years with an ankle monitor — in the comfort of his own home.
Baltimore County State’s Attorney Scott Shellenberger said in a statement to NBC that the sentence was “not appropriate” for a police officer, who “should know as well or better than others the reprehensibility of such an act.”
“Which means this defendant, who has been convicted of second-degree rape, will be serving the sentence in the privacy of their own home and that was certainly not something we were expecting or looking for,” Shellenberger said.
“I fear this could cause rape victims to hesitate to report their crimes if they do not feel like they will get justice,” he said.
Originally, Westerman had pleaded not guilty to all the charges and took the case to trial where he was found guilty based on the evidence.
This convicted serial offender was arrested in 2019 after two women accused him of rape. In one case from 2017, a woman said that after she drank too much, Westerman offered to arrange an Uber ride home. She later told police that she passed out and awoke to him raping her at his house.
The cop’s attorney claimed that since both Westerman and his victim were drunk, there was no crime.
Despite being raped by a cop and going through the nightmare that is reporting and surviving a rape, the judge — without merit — claimed that one of his victims didn’t suffer any psychological damage, so Westerman didn’t deserve the 15 year sentence. The judge claimed that since there was no letter from the victim’s psychologist presented by the defense that there must have been no harm.
This was a point disputed by prosecutors.
“The victim did tell everyone — she has been in counseling ever since this incident happened, so I didn’t really think there was dispute about the fact that there was psychological damage, but candidly we didn’t have a letter from the psychologist, but we very often don’t and it really was not a dispute that she has been, in fact, in counseling,” Shellenberger told WBAL.
“You can’t be raped and assaulted like that without suffering terrible trauma,” Dorothy Lenning, with the House of Ruth, said.
Sadly, however, because even the vilest of officers are extended blue privilege for their horrific crimes, Westerman will continue to victimize these woman as they will always know he avoided jail for what he did to them.